We all love the warm summer weather and we usually take whatever chance we get to be outside to enjoy it. However, when it gets this hot, it’s important to make sure you take the right precautions to prevent heat exhaustion or heat stroke for you and your family.
Ways in which you can be proactive in protecting yourself and your family include drinking lots of water and wearing light clothing. Limiting alcohol consumption, wearing sunscreen and trying to stay in shaded areas also helps prevent heat stroke or heat exhaustion, as well as limiting outdoor time when it is very hot outdoors. In addition to this, the body normally self regulates by sweating to cool itself off. People working hard or exercising outside on especially warm days are more at risk for heat exhaustion or stroke than others.
Some symptoms of heat exhaustion are if you are feeling faint or dizzy, sweating excessively, have cool, pale, or clammy skin. Nausea or vomiting may also be a sign of heat exhaustion in addition to muscle cramps and a faint pulse. If you or a friend or family member is experiencing these symptoms, you should try to find a cooler place, drink water, and if possible take a cold shower, or use a cold compress. All of these things will help cool off the body.
Symptoms of a heat stroke include a throbbing headache, body temperature above 103°, skin that is red, hot, and dry, a strong, fast pulse, and the possibility of losing consciousness. Another symptom to note about a heat stroke is that different from heat exhaustion, the body will not sweat. If you experience these conditions, you should call 911 and try to cool down until help arrives.
By knowing the symptoms and ways to prevent heat stroke and heat exhaustion, you can make smart choices and have a fun and safe summer!